Any surfboard, even in its plain white simplicity, can be considered art, but when you put a beautiful handcrafted surfboard into the hands of a noted artist and let him or her loose with paints, pens, or the artist's chosen tools, you've really got something special. That's exactly what Juxtapoz magazine and the Encinitas, California-based UNIV have been doing over the last few months, and the outcome was spectacular. The pair organized a group of 19 contemporary artists to create custom artwork on hand-shaped UNIV surfboards in an effort to raise money and continued awareness for Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts in the Philippines.
The project began during the Art Basel event in Miami, in conjunction with the Juxtapoz and Chandran Gallery. A mobile UNIV Workshop was set up and 19 fully functional single-fin surfboards were hand shaped and then painted on site, turning into one of the largest collections of contemporary art surfboards ever displayed.
The artists chosen to participate in this project come from all corners of the art world, including street/graffiti artists, musicians, fine artists, and illustrators. Legends and newcomers alike embraced the project and went all out to create incredible, one-of-a-kind surfboards that have art lovers champing at the bit to not only view, but also have a chance at bidding on and winning. CR Stecyk III, Geoff McFetridge, Richard Colman, Jeremy Fish, Lucy McLauchlan, Tim Biskup, Cleon Peterson, Monica Canilao, Andrew Schoultz, Swampy, Tahiti Pehrson, Ty Williams, Jason Jägel, Travis Millard, Mel Kadel, Retna, Jared Swilley (of the band The Black Lips), Mike DiNicola, and Ale Jordão all donated their time and talent to this project with the hopes of raising funds for various charities, including Waves for Water. Their collective efforts paid off, as the project raised more than $60,000 through an online auction as well as a live auction and exhibition at the T.F.R. Gallery on March 29 in Leucadia, California.
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